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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Banner at Tiger Stadium site sparks dialogue, aims to raise money for Harwell statue | The Detroit News | detroitnews.com

Will people really get worked up if a business springs up on the old Tiger Stadium site?

The banner was posted Wednesday night along the gate entrance to the site where Tiger Stadium once filled the skyline, but where today there is only a field and memories: Coming Soon, Navin Auto Sales.

The accompanying picture shows a shiny, upscale car dealership to be built on the historic site, empty since the stadium was demolished in 2008.

A comments box attached to the fence nearby encouraged feedback, which was promptly given in the form of a few choice four-letter words written in blue marker. The sign urges people to visit a website “for questions, comments and employment opportunities.”

No, it’s not the latest development plan for the beloved field that was home to the Detroit Tigers for 88 years. It’s a social experiment designed to see just what would happen if the spaces people love are threatened

Jim Furtado Posted: November 11, 2012 at 09:35 AM | 11 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: stadiums, tigers

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   1. Derb Posted: November 11, 2012 at 12:26 PM (#4300021)
Will people really get worked up if a business springs up on the old Tiger Stadium site?


Yes. That place is sacred ground to a lot of Detroiters. They would get over it, but there would be a ton of uproar if construction began on that site with no plans to "honor" the history.
   2. silhouetted by the sea Posted: November 11, 2012 at 04:09 PM (#4300128)
So the name "Navin Auto Sales" is actually a pretty good clue.
   3. steagles Posted: November 11, 2012 at 05:16 PM (#4300165)
So the name "Navin Auto Sales" is actually a pretty good clue.
yvan eht nioj
   4. RMc's desperate, often sordid world Posted: November 11, 2012 at 05:28 PM (#4300175)
One of the comments on the News site calls the guy behind this a "hipster". Geez...anyone who's spent five minutes in Detroit knows there hasn't be a hipster in these parts for decades. This ain't Brooklyn, y'know.
   5. Jim Furtado Posted: November 11, 2012 at 05:37 PM (#4300179)
I would think a nice plaque on the whatever gets build there when combined with public financing of $155 million for Comerica Park would be enough to satisfy Detroiters.
   6. smileyy Posted: November 11, 2012 at 05:40 PM (#4300183)
[4] I worked with quite a few people in downtown Detroit (some of whom even lived in downtown Detroit) who would now be called hipsters when I lived there around 2000. And even those who lived outside the city...its not like Ferndale was some far-flung distant suburb. I think the residents there can reasonably claim Detroit as their own.
   7. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: November 11, 2012 at 05:47 PM (#4300191)

I lived in Detroit this summer... there were a lot of hipsters about. Cheap rents, y'know.

The vacant site at Tiger Stadium is kind of sad but it's also wonderful that it's available and open to the public, with the infield and mound still there. I visited it sometimes and shared memories of the park with other Tiger fans. Parents and kids play there, people have softball tournaments there... it's a lot better than what some of the alternatives might have been.
   8. smileyy Posted: November 11, 2012 at 06:02 PM (#4300204)
While the place doesn't need to be preserved as an old ballpark forever, I think you can do better than an auto dealership there.
   9. Bhaakon Posted: November 11, 2012 at 06:32 PM (#4300225)
I imagine that more people will be upset about the fictitious job offers than the threat to the former site of the ballpark.
   10. Cooper Nielson Posted: November 11, 2012 at 11:25 PM (#4300364)
While the place doesn't need to be preserved as an old ballpark forever, I think you can do better than an auto dealership there.

I didn't read the article, but the thing I don't understand about the whole Tiger Stadium issue is this: There is nothing but vacant lots in downtown Detroit. If you want to build an auto dealership, a casino, a university campus, or a Great Wall of China, you can do it in about a hundred other spots in Detroit that won't upset anyone's memories.

I don't see the harm in just leaving the old Tiger Stadium site as it is, until the other land is used up. It's certainly not a bustling, growing neighborhood, and I can't believe it costs the City of Detroit (or whoever owns it now) much for upkeep.
   11. RMc's desperate, often sordid world Posted: November 12, 2012 at 09:27 AM (#4300458)
This website floats the wonderfully insane idea of bringing back Bennett Park, the 19th-century ballfield that was on this spot. I don't see how it could make money, unless you put a (presumably Tigers-affiliated) minor league team there. Maybe a museum, like a baseball version of the Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village? Where would the customers come from?

The best solution is probably to just make it into a park, keeping the diamond chalked and the grass trimmed. Come. Close your eyes. Watch the ballgame.

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